Norfolk, VA Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Motorcycle riders in Norfolk undergo more training and testing than drivers of other types of motor vehicles, including even some commercial trucks. So, while the classic biker reputation for toughness and tenacity may be based in fact, the old-fashioned reputation for lawlessness is often far from the truth. Even when they follow the rules of the road and exercise caution, though, motorcycle riders are vulnerable to accidents that can result in severe injuries. Often, the injuries to motorcyclists are caused by car drivers not seeing the rider and through no fault of the bike operator.
If you suffer injury in a motorcycle crash that someone else caused, you should speak to a Norfolk motorcycle accident lawyer and learn the steps you should be taking to protect your rights, including your right to compensation. In addition to providing personalized advice about your case, a dedicated personal injury attorney from Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers could also help with collecting evidence to build the best possible case for recovery.
How Do Motorcycle Accident Cases Differ from Other Vehicle Collisions?
While many attorneys in Norfolk handle motorcycle accident cases, not all of them are familiar with the factors that make motorcycle accident cases unique. To begin with, the vehicles themselves are different from others on the road.
Because riders must balance their weight to remain upright, unusual conditions on the roads may pose hazards to motorcyclists while having little effect on the operation of cars, trucks and buses. Accordingly, motorcyclists may be at greater risk of experiencing single-vehicle accidents than vehicles that rest on four or more wheels.
In addition, certain unique aspects of motorcycle riding subject riders to different laws than those that apply to other vehicles. For instance, Virginia Code §46.2-833 allows motorcycle riders to drive through a steady red light at an intersection if they have waited through two full light cycles without receiving a green light. Another provision in Va. Code §46.2-857 allows motorcycles to travel two abreast in a single lane of traffic, although this is prohibited for other vehicles.
The Severity of Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Finally, motorcycle riders lack the protection afforded by the frames and designs of other vehicles, so motorcycle accidents may result in much more serious injuries than those suffered by drivers or passengers of other vehicles. All these factors underscore the importance of seeking help from an experienced Norfolk motorcycle accident lawyer that know how to handle all the special elements of motorcycle accident cases.
How Does Contributory Negligence Apply to Motorcycle Wreck Cases?
In many motorcycle accident cases, an injured rider may be awarded compensation to cover damages suffered in an accident if they can show the negligence of another driver created a dangerous condition on the road which caused the crash. However, the responsible party in your case may try to raise the contributory negligence rule as a defense to their liability.
This rule, which applies in Virginia, prohibits you from recovering damages if your own negligence contributed to the cause of an accident. However, it can be difficult to prove exactly what factors contributed to the legal causation of an accident in Norfolk without a motorcycle accident lawyer’s help.
For instance, Va. Code §46.2-910 specifies that although motorcycle riders and passengers are required to wear helmets and have gear to protect the face, a failure to have such equipment will “not constitute negligence per se in any civil proceeding.” So, while some violations of law may be treated as negligence, not all violations or faults will necessarily be admissible in court to show negligence.
Talking to a Norfolk Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Depending on the circumstances, you may be entitled to recover compensation for many different consequences of a motorcycle accident if you were a rider or passenger injured in that accident. These may include monetary losses such as equipment damage, medical bills, and lost income from work. Compensation may also be available for pain, suffering and other harms.
To preserve your ability to pursue compensation through either an insurance claim or a lawsuit, it is important to acquire evidence and avoid making statements or taking actions that could compromise your case. A Norfolk motorcycle accident lawyer could provide valuable advice and assistance right from the start, and one from Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers could also advocate on your behalf at all stages of your case. Call us today to learn more if you were hurt on your motorcycle.